Pakistan’s top civilian and military leadership today expressed concern over the “deteriorating” security situation in Afghanistan and rejected as “baseless” allegations that it had any hand in last week’s bombing in the war-torn country’s capital. The assertion by Pakistan came as Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif chaired a special meeting of the National Security Committee of the Cabinet to review issues of national and regional security. The forum strongly condemned the recent incident of terrorism in Kabul and resolved to remain steadfast and resolute in support of the Afghan people, according to a statement by the Prime Minister’s Office. “The participants expressed concern on the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan and strongly rejected the baseless allegations on Pakistan in that context,” the statement said.
Pakistan had last week also strongly rejected as “baseless” the Afghan allegations that the Taliban-linked militants with the help of Pakistani spy agency ISI carried out the bombing in Kabul that killed at least 150 people. The Afghan intelligence service, the National Directorate of Security (NDS), had said early findings showed that the Haqqani network with the assistance of the ISI carried out the attack yesterday in Kabul. The meeting today highlighted that Pakistan was the only country in the Afghan equation which has achieved clear and measurable success against terrorism despite limited capacity and huge human and economic costs.
“Pakistan has not only remained committed to a peaceful and stable Afghanistan but also worked with all regional and global initiatives to that end. At the same time Pakistan has shown exceptional restraint even when Afghan territory was used for terrorist acts in Pakistan which resulted in massive human losses,” the statement said. It said that Pakistan was fully cognizant of institutional collaboration by elements hostile to Pakistan and will defend itself resolutely against manifest and future threats. The statement said Pakistan remains committed to continue its ongoing efforts for local, regional and global peace. The meeting was attended by Minister for Defence Khawaja Muhammad Asif, Minister for Finance Muhammad Ishaq Dar, Minister for Interior Chaudhry Nisar, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz, Chairman Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee General Zubair Mahmood Hayat, Chief of Army Staff General Qamar Javed Bajwa, Director General ISI Lt Gen Naveed Mukhtar and other top senior civil and military officials.